We are a family owned and operated hobby business striving to provide high quality hand crafted kilts and associated knitwear. We approach the kilt first and foremost as clothing. We do not approach it as a costume or uniform. If you want a kilt so that you can "dress up as a Scotsman," please look elsewhere. And while the kilt has a noble and proud tradition as part of the military uniform of Scotland (and other countries), military uniforms are not what we are all about. Our inspiration is the historical civilian kilt, worn traditionally as day-to-day clothing by the Highland Gael. We strive to bring that tradition into the modern day.
About Our Name: As a family enterprise, we decided to name our business after our family. Newsome is an old Yorkshire surname meaning "New House."
About Matthew: Matthew Newsome is the Director Emeritus of the Scottish Tartans Museum in Franklin, NC, and a current governor of the Scottish Tartans Authority in Crieff, Scotland. His passion for traditional Highland Dress can be seen in his monthly columns for the Scottish Banner, his frequent postings on the X Marks the Scot web forum, and his popular web site, albanach.org. In 2004 he was elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries (Scotland), and inducted into the international Guild of Tartan Scholars. He learned to make kilts from Bob Martin in 2004, and has made well over 700 kilts since that time. The great majority of these have been in the historic box pleated style, and he is known internationally as one of the few kiltmakers specializing in the four yard box pleated kilt. Professionally, he is also a Lay Ecclesial Minister of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, serving as campus minister for Western Carolina University.
About Joannie: Joannie first learned to knit as a child, and it has grown into a passion in adulthood. As well as keeping her kilt-wearing husband in custom hose, she also enjoys knitting Victorian Lace, sweaters, bags, socks, shawls, hats, fun things for the kids, and pretty much anything else you can make by tying tiny knots in string. She is frequenly on Ravelry.com posting under the name JMN. She is a full-time homeschooling mother.
Why We Do It: Matt & Joannie live in the beautiful mountains of western North Carolina with their five children. Their mountain valley homestead also includes a small flock of British Soay sheep (a rare primitive breed from the St. Kilda islands off the northwest coast of Scotland), a varying number of free range hens, and an old grey donkey watching over them all. As you can read above, Matt wears many different hats, but the two he never takes off are those of husband and father. Kiltmaking for him is a hobby business -- something he enjoys doing, but also something that can help provide financial support for our growning family. Most of his kiltmaking time is done at home, with happy children milling about him. Moreover, we know our children are being raised in a household where they get to spend time with both of their parents, and see both Mom and Dad making something with their hands that people will find of lasting value. We strive to carry that ethos on to the next generation.
Scottish Tartans Authority